Data Centre Options For Your Business: What Are Your Choices?

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The amount of data being produced in recent years is unprecedented therefore there will come a time that even small businesses need to upgrade their current data storage. Not only do businesses need to store files such as e-mails, presentations, graphics and spreadsheets but trends and government legislation are requiring that businesses securely store data for several years.

The internet of things (IoT) inherently means that devices are becoming more connected and require increased data to function effectively and remain secure from online threats. Research by Gartner suggests that by 2020 there will be 20.4 billion connected things consuming an enormous amount of data.

For all businesses the data that is being created by the IoT and within the organisation itself is a goldmine, but it needs to be stored somewhere. Data centre requirements for SME’s differ slightly from large organisations as they are likely to be reliant on budget and data volume, with that in mind below are some of the most popular choices for data storage.

On-premise

Historically, storing data physically within an organisations premises was the norm. The main benefit is that the company has total control and responsibility for the data. This also means that the company must maintain the same standards of data security as other services such as cloud or colocation solutions to ensure their data is secure. As data security isn’t likely to be top of a company’s priority list and if it requires large volumes of data to be stored the best option may not be for this information to be stored on on-site servers.

Within an evolving landscape full of online threats and increasing data needs, is it feasible or even necessary for SME’s to make the investment or should this simply be outsourced to experts?

Advantage: Company remains in complete control of data storage and access.

The cloud

Recently, cloud-based storage solutions have come under scrutiny concerning data security. Providers are aware of this and are allocating huge resource to implement large-scale data defence, however, a significant number of large security breaches still happen on public cloud solutions due to the carelessness of companies.

It's not all bad news as cloud services usually have more reliable backup and recovery systems than alternatives. A big advantage as to why SME’s utilise cloud-based solutions is due to its infrastructure making it incredibly scalable and largely self-service, ideal for rapidly growing start-ups that require an easy to use solution.

Advantages: Better backup and recovery systems and scalability.

Colocation

Colocation providers rent out space to companies to store, manage and maintain the physical hardware, this includes costs such as power, climate control and bandwidth.

Of all the available options colocation usually provides the best physical security which can include 24-hour CCTV, guards and biometric security solutions such as retina, fingerprint and voice identification. Colocation also includes backup solutions for a variety of eventualities such as power outages. These facilities would be unachievable on-site for large organisations let alone small and medium sized businesses, so investing in colocation is a great way to reap the rewards without the huge investment.

As with all solutions it's not perfect, the cost can be a concern for companies looking to implement this solution. SME’s need to consider the amount of data storage that is required and their budget, this will determine whether or not colocation is the right option.

Advantages: Flexibility, agility, scalability and great physical data security.

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